Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Movie Review: ‘The Lost City’: A Comedic Gem Hidden In The Labyrinth

Director: Aaron Nee and Adam Nee 

Writers: Dana Fox, Adam Nee, and Orne Uziel

Stars: Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum, and Daniel Radcliffe

Synopsis: A reclusive romance novelist on a book tour with her cover model gets swept up in a kidnapping attempt that lands them both in a cutthroat jungle adventure.

It doesn’t take much to convince me to see a comedy. Comedies truly are my comfort movie genre when I’m looking for a little rest and relaxation to either kick-off or end my weekend. Comedies are the type of movies that can be viewed as going to a fast food restaurant. The food is easy to digest, they are loved by the people, and there is always something new on the menu to try. Let’s just say I took a trip to my favorite theater and ordered The Lost City special and I can’t get enough. 

They say laughter is good for the soul and I wholeheartedly agree. I went in blind when I went to see this movie and I’m glad that I did. I loosely knew the concept of the movie prior, but at the time it didn’t look interesting to me. I thought this was one of your standard, generic comedies that somehow got approved by Hollywood. I didn’t give this movie a second thought after viewing the trailer, but I decided to give it a chance anyway. I’m not sure if it was the plot or the fact that this movie was filled with talented actors such as Daniel Radcliffe, Sandra Bullock, and Channing Tatum, but something drew me to this film and I’m glad it did. 

The plot of this film is very straightforward and tells you exactly what the story of the movie will be. Loretta (Bullock) gets tangled up with her cover model Alan (Tatum) on a quest to find the lost treasure of an ancient city led by the antagonist of the film Abigail Fairfax (Radcliffe). When it comes to comedies, I feel as though a lot of the plot can get lost in translation and bogged down by too many jokes but with The Lost City, I found that it was easy to follow along and the line delivery was hitting on every level. It felt as if this movie was tailor-made for me. Every joke landed so well and I found myself falling in love with dialogue. The script was snappy, witty, and quippy and made me chuckle more than a few times.

I was thoroughly surprised by a few of the performances of The Lost City. It has been some time since I’ve seen Daniel Radcliffe on screen, but I think that the comedy scene is right up his alley. I know it’s hard to associate him with anything else outside of Harry Potter. However, I think this type of role could work for him in future projects. Channing Tatum’s character was pegged as the “attractive dumb one” but he always brought a smile to my face. I believe that this is one of my favorite performances by him in ages. As much as I enjoyed him in the Jumpstreet films, this is probably his best performance by far. And I have to give a special shoutout to Jack Trainer (Brad Pitt). Although he’s only in the movie for a short while, he leaves a lingering presence that will keep you thinking long after the movie is over.

I realize that there are numerous positives that come with talking about this film but there is a negative that I cannot overlook. When it comes to comedies, I expect the story to have tight pacing and not overstay its welcome. With that said, the run time could have been shaved down by about 25 minutes. There are some scenes in which they stayed in one location longer than I would have liked, but I understand why they took this route. The front half of this film is a comedy through and through, but the second half steered into the romance side which is something I did not foresee, but it was a welcomed surprise. 

The Lost City is the perfect palate cleanser for those who are looking for a fresh twist on the comedy genre. The writing is clever and will keep you laughing long after you’ve left the theater and Channing Tatum’s performance steals the show. If this movie was a fast food item it would be the Big Mac with a side of large fries and an ice-cold beverage. This is one of the biggest surprises of the year and if this film has taught me anything, it’s that we could all use a good laugh now and again.


Grade: B+


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